Japan stocks headed for a third straight day of gains Friday morning, after the U.S. stock market surged Thursday. The Nikkei Average advanced 1.8%, with the broader Topix up 1.9%. The yen weakened to �119.01, compared with �118.94 a day earlier. Financial shares are among the biggest outperformers, with Daiwa Securities Group Inc. spiking 4%, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group,Inc. leaping 3.5%, and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc. jumping 3.4%, and Nomura Holdings, Inc. rising 3.3%. Auto makers also posted substantial gains, as Toyota Motor Corp. climbed 2.2%, Honda Motor Co., Ltd. gained 2.1%, and Mazda Motor Corp. shot up 1.7%. Other market movers included Tokyo Electron Ltd. soaring 4.7%, Fujitsu Ltd, up 2,8%, and Hitachi, Ltd. higher by 2.6%. In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 improved by 1.6%.
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